Virgin Mobile prepares for IPO

Branson and company are set to hit the stock exchange, with staff receiving a shares-based windfall

The financial details of the Virgin Mobile flotation -- planned for later this month -- and the windfall its execs can expect to see as a result have been made public.

The IPO will bring in between £588m and £713m for the mobile company when it floats on the stock market on 21 July. Individual shares will trade for between £2.35 and £2.85. Virgin will still retain majority control of the company, however, holding at least 57 per cent of the stake.

It seems both employees of the virtual network operator and chief executive Tom Alexander will do well out of the flotation.

With a percentage of the IPO reserved just for them, Virgin Mobile staff are expected to receive over £1,000 of shares each. It's a tidy sum but pales in comparison to the £20m Alexander will get. Six million pounds will be a performance-related cash bonus and £6.5 in shares from the IPO.

Group chief executive Sir Richard Branson said he hopes the IPO will raise £279m in capital for the mobile company. Branson will also get a bonus from the float, drawing a £100,000 annual salary as honorary president.

A final price for the shares will be set the day before trading begins.